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Michael A. Johnson
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Parenting plans as strong foundations for the future

| Mar 23, 2016 | Child Custody |

The emotional turmoil of divorce can be amplified when children are involved. In a best-case scenario, Arizona parents can get along well enough to coparent and can also shield their children from some of the worst fallout from the divorce. One of the tools for doing this is a detailed parenting plan.

Parents should keep in mind that even when children are no longer minors, there are still situations in which they may be forced to interact such as if and when their children have children of their own. Laying the groundwork early for smooth relations might make the years and even decades after divorce easier. Discussing the parenting plan helps with that by anticipating problems in advance and considering how they might be resolved.

A parenting plan also sends a message to the children as well as school administrators and others that parents are prioritizing the children. With the written plan in place, parents can avoid arguments about the contents of the agreement and might even include provisions to deal with future changes without having to return to court. Even if mediation or litigation is necessary, the parenting plan gives parents a framework to work within until they can get necessary changes made.

One of the most difficult aspects of a divorce is working out child custody, visitation and support. Both parents and the court itself usually want what is in the best interests of the child even if they may disagree about those interests. Parents also struggle with the idea of giving up time with their children. Some parents may find that if they can avoid going to court, they can reach an agreement through negotiation that is more satisfactory. Attorneys can often assist with these negotiations.

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